Thursday, November 22, 2012

LIVE from Fort Benning, Georgia...
Tune into the live video stream from the November Vigil

The Mobile Broadcast News just started today's livestreaming of the rally at the gates of Fort Benning, Georgia. Go to to watch live footage of the protest, hear speakers from across the Americas, witness their testimony, check out the beautiful puppetista pageant, and listen to the musicians perform on stage. Click here to see what is happening at the gates of Fort Benning right now.

The live streaming will continue tomorrow, when thousands will transform the fence at the main gates into a memorial for those killed by graduates of the SOA/WHINSEC.

Please share the live feed link within your networks. Post the link on your Facebook wall, on Twitter, or forward this email to your friends and family.

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International Women's Day Against Violence

Thursday, November 29, 2012 - 6:00pm


Nate Smith House, 155 Lamartine St.
Jamaica Plain , MA
Internacional Women’s Day Against Violence
“Día Internacional de la Violencia Contra la Mujer”

We continue opening doors and making history
Continuamos haciendo Historia y Abriendo Caminos
  • Panel & Discussion about women & violence
  • Discusion acerca de violencia Y MUJER
  • Learn about migration and violence
  • Migracion y violencia
  • The Labor Movement and violence against women
  • El Movimiento Laboral y violencia contra las mujeres
  • Domestic workers- an invisible force
  • Las trabajadoras domesticas- Una fuerza invisible

For information/para information : email or call 857-719-9055- 617-524-4029

Where Will YOU Be On Black Friday?

November 15, 2012 - 2:31pm

Following on the heels of the first-ever strikes by Walmart workers across the country, workers are recommitting and going on strike to stop the company’s retaliation and attempts to silence workers for speaking out for change.
Will you stand with them on Black Friday? If so, we are asking you to adopt a Walmart store and plan an action. Even a small delegation of 2 to 5 people will show support for Walmart workers and send a strong message to Walmart.
Here are some ideas for ways to show your support:
1) Delegations of two or more people to Walmart managers to deliver a letter in support of the workers.
2) Flyering of customers
3) Thanking Walmart workers
4) Organize prayer vigils, caroling or join an existing action.
5) More ideas and materials here!
Find a location for the nearest action here!
Please be sure to take pictures of your peaceful, legal protest and send them to us. Locations of Walmart stores and materials for actions are attached.
For more information, please contact Edwin Argueta by email or call (617) 524-8778.

Defend Free Speech In Boston

Call to Action: Defend Student Radicals & Free Speech at U Mass Boston
The rights to free speech and student organizing are in danger on the UMass Boston campus. Restrictive policies are being used to target the UMB student chapter of International Socialist Organization and student dissent in general.
A public institution for higher education should be a place to learn inside and outside of the classroom, it should have an environment that fosters critical thinking, and an atmosphere that encourages student engagement in politics and current events.
Rhetorically there is an apparent consensus among the campus community that this is the way things should be. This is directly from the UMass Boston website:
“The University of Massachusetts Boston is an educational institution dedicated to rigorous, open, critical inquiry—a gateway to intellectual discovery in all branches of knowledge... Our campus culture fosters imagination, creativity, and intellectual vitality... we expect and welcome divergent views, honoring our shared commitment to expanding, creating, and disseminating knowledge.”
But as students in the International Socialist Organization, an authorized student organization for four semesters, we have been steadily thrown bureaucratic obstacles that show deep contradictions between the universities policies and its stated mission.
The allegations leveled against us are "mismanagement of funds" and "posting violations". We have still not been formally told what the "mismanagement of funds" accusation is about and the posting violation comes from allegedly putting New England Marxism Conference posters up in "not designated" locations. As result our funds have been confiscated and the future of our club status is uncertain.
At a time when the Board of Trustees and administration are working in tandem to increase student fees, ignore mounting student debt, and make education less and less accessible, it is ridiculous that bureaucracy is being prioritized over the student community.
This situation brings to light a stark contrast between policy and rhetoric on campus. We are not the only group to have noticed this or to be dealt bureaucratic obstacles to our organizing. UMass Boston is a working class university where nearly 16,000 students commute to class. A posting policy that only allows 55 flyers to be posted in limited designated space makes it incredibly challenging to publicize events on campus. The funding system demands a student club to plan an entire semester’s schedule to exact details even before the semester starts. For a group like the ISO, who deals with ever changing current events, this prohibits us from playing a dynamic role in responding to something we didn’t plan for 3 months in advance. These policies create unnecessary obstacles for student engagement.
We believe this is politically motivated selective enforcement of the rules Undergraduate Student Government (USG) and the administration meant to target and repress activists on campus while stifling critical thought and political dissent. This has been part of a pattern of increased harassment over the last two semesters, semesters where we have been involved in publicizing and challenging the administrations fee hikes and parking fare increases. We fear that continued repression will result in the elimination of the ISO club status and funding altogether.
Unfortunately, the USG and the Administration have failed to approach this situation in good faith. Instead, they held an initial hearing with us where they cut the meeting short, rushed us out of the room after the meeting was abruptly ended before we were allowed to fully address the allegations against us, and then came to a quick and unanimous decision to freeze our funds without any deliberation (it appeared like they came into the hearing with the verdict already made). They've now given us a final opportunity to appeal this decision with the USG--in a meeting which they refuse to allow us to have any legal representation present, will not allow us to record and document the proceedings, and are denying campus and community members the right to attend.
We will continue to show our commitment to encouraging student engagement, building a stronger student community, and promoting the free flow of ideas, critical thought and discussion, and activism. The UMass Boston ISO wants to work with--not against- Student Government and the Administration to change the current policies regulating posting and student clubs.
But right now we need your help. We need to show the USG and campus Administration that students, faculty, alumni, and community members are concerned with the repressive measures being taken against the ISO on campus and are opposed to the existing posting and funding policies regulating student organizations.
Here's what you can do!
1. If you haven’t signed our petition already please sign HERE
2. Write a letter to Undergraduate Student Government’s Chief Justice Shani Walker (, Student Activities director Shelby Harris (, as well as Chancellor J. Keith Motley (
Also, we are encouraging anyone who wants to be a part of this campaign to join us and other campus community members at our final appeals hearing with the USG on Wednesday November 28th at 3:00pm. Even if the public is not allowed in, the more support we can show, the better!
Thank you for standing in solidarity with us and coming together to help build a movement that fosters student engagement, political activism, and critical thought! This is exactly what democracy looks like.
In solidarity,
The UMass Boston International Socialist Organization

Students protest Gaza attacks in Copley Square rally

On the left, hundreds of Pro-palestine protesters are seen marching in solidarity with Gaza on Copley Square Monday night. Pro-Israeli protesters were also seen at the rally, waving the Iraeli flag. SELINE JUNG/DAILY FREE PRESS STAFF
Waving giant Palestinian flags and shouting “Viva viva Palestina,” more than 1,000 protesters marched from Copley Square to the Israeli Consulate Tuesday night, demanding a stop to Israel’s actions against Palestinians.Protesters met on Copley Square, holding up signs that read “Israel Apartheid” and “Boycott all Israeli products.” The crowd blocked traffic as it marched from Copley Square to the Israel Consulate on Park Plaza, marching by the State House and ending with more chants back in Copley.
The protest was countered by a number of Israel supporters at Copley Square, who waved Israeli flags and wore them over their shoulders. The group was not present throughout the entire demonstration.
Members of Northeastern University’s Students for Justice in Palestine organized the march, which SJP members from Boston University also attended.
Max Geller, a first-year law student at Northeastern and a member of the college’s SJP advisory committee, said the recent military actions in Gaza were the catalysts that sparked the group to organize the march.
“This is a demonstration about people, not about Hamas or Israel,” Geller said. “It’s about the people in Gaza who are dying.”
Tala Borno, a third year Northeastern student also on the Northeastern SJP’s advisory committee, said the problem with media coverage of the fighting in Gaza is that it does not articulate the Palestinian side.
“This is what we’re trying to fight here — we’re trying to raise awareness that the media isn’t,” Borno said.
Borno said most of the people dead in Gaza right now are women and children.
“They say that they’re targeting terrorist organizations like Hamas but in reality they’ve only targeted, like, two men and the rest have just been casualties,” she said.
Borno said she thinks there have been more than a hundred deaths by now.
“Were raising awareness about what’s actually happening because no one’s getting this information so we’re taking it upon ourselves to tell everyone in the U.S. what’s happening.
Leora Kaufman, president of BU Students for Israel, said she and a group of Israel supporters attended the march on Thursday.
“I was at the last SJP rally and was cursed at and called a racist,” Kaufman said. “I didn’t really appreciate being demonized for standing up for a country that’s been a second home to me my whole life.”
Kaufman said these kinds of rallies do not help the cause.
“We mourn the lives lost of both civilians from Gaza and from Israel, but we have yet to see really productive measures from SJP that really promotes dialogue,” Kaufman said.
Kaufman said that if groups such as SJP prove that that their activities are to help the Palestinian people and not put Israeli in the spotlight as the aggressor, then BUSI would be willing to work with them.
“If we’re talking about preserving human life and if that’s what they truly care about, then we’re completely on board to do some sort of peace initiative together,” she said.
Keegan O’Brien, a University of Massachusetts-Boston senior and member of the International Socialist Organization branch at his college, said the U.S. funds crimes that Israel is carrying out against the indigenous population of Palestine.
“As taxpayers in this country we have a direct responsibility to the people of Palestine to do everything we can to stop our government from funding the egregious crimes that Israel is carrying out,” O’Brien said.
Borno said the Northeastern SJP organized similar marches on Thursday and Friday that attracted a couple hundred people.
Borno said the police estimated about 1,200 people at the peak of the march on Tuesday night.

2 Responses for “Students protest Gaza attacks in Copley Square rally”

December 1st Is Military Abolition Day

By David Swanson
I've been fond of December 1st ever since I was born on it. I later found out that it had been on a December 1st that Rosa Parks had sat down and refused to stand up or move to the back of that racist bus in Montgomery. Later still I found out about a December 1st that had happened still earlier.
It was on December 1, 1948, that President José Figueres Ferrer of Costa Rica abolished the military of Costa Rica. He didn't "cut" its projected dream budget by a teeny fraction that sounded bigger if multiplied by 10 and announced as a reduction "over 10 years." He didn't cut it in the ordinary sense of actually cutting it. He abolished it. Costa Rica put its military in a museum and a museum in its military headquarters. It turned its military bases into schools. It turned its military budget into a fund for useful projects. In 1986, President Oscar Arias Sánchez declared December 1st the Día de la Abolición del Ejército (Military Abolition Day).
Without a military, Costa Rica has not been a perfect paradise on earth, but it has avoided invading or being invaded by other countries. It has avoided military coups and civil wars and CIA interventions (although a coup in Honduras in 2009 involved flying the president to Costa Rica).
Costa Rica is not rich, but its people have a higher life expectancy than we do in the United States. Costa Rica provides a social safety net and of course provides everyone healthcare, spending less per capita than we do but providing superior healthcare than is provided by the wealthy United States. Costa Rica is ranked by the Happy Planet Index as the #1 best place to live for happiness. The United States comes in at #150 out of 178. U.S. elections have 50% turnout and somewhere around 98% disgust. Costa Rican elections have 90% turnout and enthusiastic participation. And Costa Rica's way of life is far more sustainable than ours, one of the most sustainable in the world.
It's not a coincidence that our super wealthy country spends as much as all other nations combined on war preparations and ranks pitifully low in measures of health, education, environmentalism, happiness, and well-being. We imagine that without a big military other nations would attack ours. But why would they? Simply because ours frequently attacks others? That's a projection, not an observation.
We imagine that without the largest military ever seen, we couldn't attack other nations for their own good and the good of the world. But the tradeoff we've chosen is not one of sacrificing for the world's safety. If the United States didn't spend $1 trillion every year on war preparation and war, it could spend that money on its own people and the world's. We could have turned Afghanistan into Costa Rica over the past decade. We could have built schools and hospitals and green infrastructure. Does anyone seriously imagine that the people of Afghanistan or Pakistan or Yemen would hate the U.S. government more if it bought them a better life rather than raining its hated missiles from the sky?
Libertarians in the United States may not want to help the world, or even our own country, but they at least want to stop investing in killing. Liberals, on the other hand, want to keep the war preparations money flowing while taxing millionaires to help pay for it. Every "progressive" group in the United States right now is demanding that we protect what's left of our safety net, tax millionaires and billionaires, and (through careful silence) leave military spending right where it is or where it's headed. Costa Rica has made progress beyond the imagining of our progressives, and it hasn't done so through progressive taxation. Costa Rica has chosen not to make large-scale murder its primary public purpose, or any purpose at all.
In the United States, peace groups sometimes mark the International Day of Peace. But virtually everyone ignores Military Abolition Day. It's time we changed that.

David Swanson's books include "War Is A Lie." He blogs at and and works as Campaign Coordinator for the online activist organization He hosts Talk Nation Radio. Follow him on Twitter: @davidcnswanson and FaceBook.

Stop the "Grand Bargain" -- It's a Turkey!

Monday, November 26, 2012, 12:00 pm
Downstairs from Sen. John Kerry's office, Cambridge St and New Chardon St, Boston
President Obama and Republicans are bargaining to cut the deficit. But they shouldn’t balance the budget on the backs of ordinary people, who didn’t cause the problems. Stop the fiscal swindle!
On November 7, the people of 91 Massachusetts cities and towns passed the Budget for All by a 3 to 1 margin. It calls for budget principles that will put people back to work, fight climate change, rebuild our economy for the future, and stop endless wars, while balancing the budget:
Stop the cuts to Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, unemployment benefits, housing, food and veterans’ benefits
Grand Turkey Invest in jobs in manufacturing, schools, housing, renewable energy, transportation and public services
Close corporate tax loopholes, end offshore tax havens, and raise taxes on incomes over $250,000
Reduce the military budget, end the war in Afghanistan and bring troops home safely now
Join tenants, community and faith leaders, peace activists, and the Grand Turkey at a rally! Bring appropriate props and costumes (turkeys, billionaire suits, musical instruments, signs and banners) -- and tell us in advance that you'll be there! Register to attend at! We will gather in front of Senator Kerry’s office to deliver a letter, and then march to Senator Brown’s nearby office. Tell our elected officials to reject the "grand bargain" – it’s a turkey!

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An Egyptian boy leads protesters in chanting slogans against the Israeli invasion of Gaza. Washington feared uprisings in Egypt, Jordan and other countries in the region.
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By Richard Becker
A ceasefire agreement between the Hamas-led Palestinian government in Gaza and Israel was announced today, Nov. 21, in Cairo by U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Egyptian Foreign Minister Mohammed Kamel Amr.
Clinton made an emergency trip to the Middle East with the aim of brokering a truce, a clear sign of the Obama administration's fears that the continuation of the brutal Israeli assault on Gaza was endangering U.S. imperialist interests in the region.
Read Richard Becker's important book 'Palestine, Israel and the U.S. Empire.'
Since Israel's latest intense bombing campaign began last week, Clinton, President Obama, and Republican and Democratic congressional leaders have repeatedly expressed all-out support for the Israeli side, while pointedly ignoring far higher Palestinian casualties.
The House of Representatives "passed" a resolution expressing its "unwavering commitment" to Israel. House Resolution 813 was introduced at 12:04 p.m. on Nov. 16, and declared adopted at 12:05 p.m. the same day!
Since Nov. 14, at least 146 Palestinians have been killed, more than 1,000 wounded, and much of Gaza's infrastructure and public facilities destroyed by a coordinated air, sea and land-based bombardment. On the Israeli side, there have been five killed and more than 100 wounded.
To hear U.S. officials talk, you would think it was the other way around. But despite their obscenely pro-Israel rhetoric, it was also clear that Washington was fearful that a new Israeli ground invasion of Gaza might provoke rebellions in Egypt, Jordan and other neighboring Arab countries, and possibly lead to a wider war.
Despite the death and destruction inflicted by Israel, and despite the fact that it has no air force, navy, armored units or anti-aircraft defenses, the Palestinian forces have not been defeated. Virtually all news reports from inside Gaza reflect a strong determination to resist among the population.
The terms of the temporary agreement reportedly call for a halt to the fighting, an end to Israeli targeted assassinations of Palestinian leaders, and undefined steps to lift the Israeli blockade that has inflicted massive suffering on the 1.6 million Palestinians in Gaza.
Lifting the blockade is a critical issue for the people of Gaza. Whether there will be any real movement toward ending the blockade remains in doubt, as does the durability of the truce as a whole.
While Israel withdrew its settlers and bases from Gaza in 2005, it has kept the area surrounded and blockaded ever since. As result, half of all school children are malnourished and two-thirds of infants are anemic. Eighty percent of Gaza’s population are refugees -- those driven out of other parts of Palestine by the Zionist military forces in 1948 and their descendants.
After the Hamas party won the January 2006 Palestinian parliamentary election, Israel imposed a complete blockade on Gaza, with the support of the United States, European Union and the client government of Hosni Mubarak in Egypt. That the aim of the blockade was to make the people of Gaza suffer was highlighted by an article in the Israeli newspaper Haaretz the following month. It reported on a meeting of top Israeli government officials where the top advisor to then-Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, Dov Weisglass, said: "It's like an appointment with a dietician. The Palestinians will get a lot thinner but won’t die." According to the Haaretz report, the assembled officials "rolled with laughter," at Weislglass's grotesque "joke."
In the 1960s, the Black Panther Party had a saying about racist cops justifying their routine killing and brutalizing of Black people by "masquerading as the victim of an unprovoked attack." It is a description that perfectly fits Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and his predecessors going back to the creation of the Israeli state in 1948.
In the U.S. corporate media, Israel is invariably depicted as the "victim." Its brutal and cowardly military assaults are justified as "retaliation," inferring that Israel's actions are "self-defense." Over and over, since the early 1950s, successive Israeli governments have staged provocations to prompt responses that could then be used to justify massive attacks while presenting Israel as the "victim of an unprovoked attack." The aim has generally been to gain new territory and/or crush any state or movement perceived as a threat to Israeli military domination.
This familiar pattern was repeated in November 2008. The murder of five Palestinian civilians on the day after the 2008 U.S. election broke a ceasefire and set in motion a train of events that led to an all-out assault on Gaza by the Israeli military. A vast array of weaponry, including white phosphorous and depleted uranium munitions, was unleashed on a trapped population. More than 1,400 Palestinians were killed, while Israeli forces had 13 killed -– a ratio of more than 100 to 1.
This time, the fatal shooting of a mentally disabled young man on Nov. 5 and a 12-year-old boy on Nov. 9, both killed by the Israeli army inside Gaza, set off the new round of fighting. Then, on Nov. 14, Israel assassinated a top Hamas leader, Ahmed Al-Jaabari, the very same day that he had been presented with a proposal for a long-term ceasefire by a joint Israeli-Egyptian commission.
These provocations were no doubt approved at the highest level of the Israeli government. The extreme right-wing Netanyahu-Lieberman government desired a new conflict both to further devastate the Palestinian infrastructure in Gaza and to advance their political prospects in the January 2013 Israeli election. That hundreds of Palestinians and some Israelis as well would die in order to achieve these objectives was incidental to the Israeli leaders.
Whether the present ceasefire holds and for how long can't be known at this point. The only real long-term solution to the crisis is an to end to colonial occupation and real self-determination for the Palestinian people, including the right to return to their homeland.

Pardon Private Manning Stand-Out-Central Square, Cambridge, Ma. -Wednesday November 28th, 5:00 PM

Let’s Redouble Our Efforts To Free Private Bradley Manning-President Obama Pardon Bradley Manning -Make Every Town Square In America (And The World) A Bradley Manning Square From Boston To Berkeley to Berlin-Join Us In Central Square, Cambridge, Ma. For A Stand-Out For Bradley- Wednesday November 28 From 5:00-6:00 PM


The Private Bradley Manning case is headed toward a mid- winter trial now scheduled for February 2013. The recent news on his case has centered on the many (since last April) pre-trial motions hearings including defense motions to dismiss for lack of speedy trial (Private Manning’s pre-trial confinement is now entering 900 plus days), dismissal as a matter of freedom of speech and alleged national security issues (issues for us to know what the hell the government is doing either in front of us, or behind our backs) and dismissal based on serious allegations of torturous behavior by the military authorities extending far up the chain of command while Private Manning was detained at the Quantico Marine brig for about a year ending in April 2011. The latest news from the November 2012 pre-trail sessions is the offer by the defense to plead guilty to lesser charges (wrongful, unauthorized use of the Internet, etc.) in order to clear the deck and have the major (with a possibility of a life sentence) espionage /aiding the enemy issue solely before the court-martial judge (a single military judge, the one who has been hearing the pre-trial motions, not a lifer-stacked panel).

For the past several months there has been a weekly stand-out in Greater Boston across from the Davis Square Redline MBTA stop (renamed Pardon Bradley Manning Square for the stand-out’s duration) in Somerville on Friday afternoons but we have since July 4, 2012 changed the time and day to 4:00-5:00 PM on Wednesdays. This stand-out has, to say the least, been very sparsely attended. We need to build it up with more supporters present. This Wednesday November 28th at 5:00 PM in order to broaden our outreach we, in lieu of our regular Davis Square stand-out, are meeting in Central Square , Cambridge, Ma.(small park at the corner of Massachusetts Avenue and Prospect Street) for a stand-out for Private Manning. President Obama Pardon Private Manning Now!

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Andre Malraux's "Man's Hope"

As I wrote in recent review of Man’s Fate by this same author as a young man in the late 1920’s many held out high hopes that French writer Andre Malraux would become an accomplished revolutionary writer, or at least an extraordinary writer of revolutionary sagas. No less a communist literary critic than Leon Trotsky, the consummate man of action and letters, praised his early work. Man’s Hope is another prime example of the reason that leftist critics praised his work, although it is a more uneven work which reflects the author’s ambiguity toward the events of the subject of the novel, the Spanish Civil. Although later events would destroy Malraux’s reputation as a writer and as a man of action on the left this novel takes its place in the pantheon of well written expressions of the dilemma of modern humankind confronted as it is with one half of itself mired in the mundane bourgeois world and the other half striving toward a more just and equitable society. This was a central preoccupation of 20th century leftist literary endeavor, and early Malraux was one of the better exponents of that thesis.

The action of the novel takes place in the throes of the Spanish Civil War, 1936-39, a decisive event in pre-World War II history, especially international working class history. Malraux, himself, had organized an air force squadron of international volunteers on behalf of the Republican forces early on and so this novel benefits from a more realistic interpretation of the action described in the novel. Moreover, like Russia and China before it, everyone knew that the events which led up to 1936 Fascist uprising against the elected Popular Front Republican government in Spain portended a revolutionary outcome. The only question at that point was whether it was to be a fascist counter-revolution like in Germany and Italy or a socialist revolution that would go a long way to helping the Soviet Union of the 1930’s break out of its isolation after various unsuccessful revolutionary attempts in the West had failed. We know the outcome, to our regret. This tension, and especially the tensions produced among the Communists who were under orders from the Communist International, and hence Moscow, to subordinate themselves to the various Popular Front governments, is what drives the action.

The novel is also a snapshot of what the Communist International’s ‘high policy’ looks like as it was implemented on the ground among the secondary cadre and rank and filers of the Spanish Communist Party, their allies, semi-allies, adversaries and the merely indifferent. But more than struggle that the novel betrays in its dialogue among the leading characters something of Malraux's disillusionment with leftist politics at this time. Hereafter Malraux would become something of a ‘premature’ existentialist and searcher after the ‘great men’ of history like Stalin and DeGaulle.

Yes, war is hell. Yes, war is banal. Yes, war does not bring out the better instincts of humankind, even in just wars like Spain. Despite the caveat mentioned above, Malraux nevertheless tells that part of the story well, in the tradition of Hemingway and Dos Passos. That is fast company, indeed. Read on.


Andre Malraux's "Man's Fate"


As a young man many held out high hopes that Andre Malraux would become an accomplished revolutionary writer, or at least an extraordinary writer of revolutionary sagas. No less a communist literary critic than Leon Trotsky, the consummate man of action and letters, praised his early work. Man’s Fate is a prime example of the reason that leftist critics praised his work. Although later events would tarnish his reputation as a writer and as a man of action on the left this novel takes its place in the pantheon of well written expressions of the dilemma of modern humankind confronted as it is with one half of itself mired in the mundane bourgeois (and in this case also feudal) world and the other half striving toward a more just and equitable society.


The action of the novel takes place in the throes of the Second Chinese revolution at a point where the alliance between Chiang Kai Sheik’s Kuomintang and the Chinese Communist Party had broken down and Chiang was ready to butcher the Communists in order to take undisputed control of the Chinese state. Like Russia before it, everyone had known that a second Chinese Revolution was coming. The only question at that point was whether it was to be a bourgeois revolution in the classic Western sense or a socialist revolution that would go a long way to helping the Soviet Union of the 1920’s break out of its isolation after various unsuccessful revolutionary attempts in the West had failed. Neither event occurred at that time. This tension, and especially the tension of the Communists who were under orders from the Communist International, and hence Moscow, to subordinate themselves to Chiang unconditionally, is what drives the action.


The novel is also a well-written snapshot of what ‘high policy’ looks like as it is implemented on the ground among the secondary cadre and rank and filers of the Chinese Communist Party, their allies, semi-allies, adversaries and the merely indifferent. It is also an early case study in the relationship between those who carry out, even if in small ways, imperialist policy in their separate and exclusive enclaves and those ‘natives’ who do the ‘coolie’ work. That tension exists today, as can readily be seen in places like Iraq, so one should pay particular attention to that dynamic. Read on.       

"Ali" -The Movie

On its face it is hard to see how a cinematic treatment of the life of Muhammad Ali (played here by Will Smith), the great prizefighter, could adequately portray the life he actually led. But that is indeed the case here. For those who grew up with him in mid-20th century America it is a nostalgic look back. For those too young to have known his life story this is a good primer of why many considered him one of the greatest athletics of all time and one why, friend or foe, considered him one hell of a man. That is the part that interests me. I am not now nor was I then a fight fan. The part of Ali’s career that interests me is his fight against black oppression, as he saw it. That in his youth he took a black separatist course joining the Nation of Islam in reaction to the rampart racism in America and American sports is understandable if not strategically the way forward for black liberation. The scenes with Malcolm X, who acted as something of a mentor, are among the best in the film. Ali was a man not only with a sports mission but a political mission. That became quite apparent when he, despite damage to his career and to his financial interests, refused to be inducted in the military during the Vietnam War period. His reasoning was simple-he had no quarrel with the Vietnamese. Many lesser figures, who now head the American government, were not nearly so forthright and skipped around the decisive political and moral event of the baby boomer generation. Hats off to Ali. Hats off to a great liberation fighter, who stood up when it counted.  


On The Molly Maguires- A Word -And A Song

The tale of the famous “Molly Maguires” of the Pennsylvania coal field in the period immediately after the American Civil War is another in the seemingly endless stories of the Irish Diaspora triggered by the ruthless policy of the bloody English imperialists, who come what may, refused to part with their colony until forced to by the Irish national liberation fighters of the early 20th century. One can read the Molly Maguire story as one of the first attempts in the post-Civil War period to organize an industry-wide labor union in the coal industry, including its oaths and secrecy. One can also read it as a story of labor confronted by the consolidation of capitalism in the extractive industries linked up to the carrying trade of the railroads and financed by stockholders here and in Britain. Finally one can read the story as a police procedural, highlighting the role of the infamous Pinkerton Detective Agency and its founder Alan Pinkerton in bringing some of the alleged leaders of the Mollies to trial and execution on behalf of the railroad and coal bosses. That is the route the author of the book under review has taken.

While some of the story as presented is tiresome, repetitive and overly written it nevertheless has a few points that can help us understand the history of that turbulent period in the foundation of the ‘robber baron’ period of American history.  One point is a rather good description, using the Reading Railroad and its president as a case study, of how the railroads, backed by finance capital, the banks, consolidated the coal industry by breaking the individual operators, buying coal land on the cheap and by manipulating supply and demand which ultimately broke the local miners union of which the Mollies were a small part. Another point is how the mainly English capitalists of the area aggravated the already existing antagonisms between ethnic groups to their benefit in a classic example of their ‘divide and rule’ policy. Finally, the story points outs out the key role that privately-employed detective agencies, private police and ultimately state and federal troops played in bringing about the early defeats in the American labor movement (and continue to do so today). As stated above it you want the tale of the police roundup of some none too savory elements in the Mollies read this book. If you want to get a better picture of what the Mollies meant as part of the Irish Diaspora in America and as part of the hard-pressed and poorly organized early American labor movement look elsewhere.       


Free Bradley Manning


Tuesday, November 20, 2012

We're All Gazans Now

We're All Gazans Now

by Stephen Lendman

The whole world's watching. Growing millions know. Israel’s a rogue terror state. It's amoral, brutish, and ruthless. Arabs are murdered for not being Jews.

Gazans suffer most of all. Israel's been terror-bombing them daily. Civilians are maliciously targeted.

Growing numbers are killed. Official totals way understate the toll. Many others are injured. Children are traumatized. Parents are frantic. How much more of this can people take?

Gazans dig through rubble for survivors. Others bury their dead. Media scoundrels assault truth. They run cover for Israel's worst crimes. Imagine supporting mass murder. Doing so makes them complicit.

A scurrilous New York Times editorial headlined "Hamas's Illegitimacy," saying:

"Hamas, which took control of Gaza in 2007 and is backed by Iran, is so consumed with hatred for Israel that it has repeatedly resorted to violence, no matter the cost to its own people."

Fact check

Vicious lies like this demand condemnation. Setting the record straight is vital. Hamas is Palestine's legitimate government.

In January 2006, Palestinians elected their officials overwhelmingly. Israel and Washington imposed a West Bank coup d'etat regime. It's illegitimate. It's also pro-Israeli.

Conflict followed. Hamas was wrongly blamed. Abbas serves illegitimately as president. Israel rigged his election. His term expired in January 2009.

He won't step down or hold new elections. He's a longtime Israeli collaborator. He sold out at Oslo. He spurns his own people. He replicates Quisling harshness. He's an embarrassment to legitimate governance.

Hamas supports all Palestinians. It spurns violence. It responds defensively when attacked. It's their right and obligation under international law. All governments bear full responsibility to protect their people.

So-called Gaza "militants" are freedom fighters. They heroically resist Israeli terror. Their souls aren't for sale.

Times editors suppress truth and full disclosure. They support wealth, power and privilege. They defend wrong over right. They cheerlead imperial war.

They shame themselves in the process. They also betray their readers. Other media scoundrels do the same thing.

Israeli crimes of war and against humanity are called self-defense.

Legitimate self-defense is called terrorism.

Israel planned Operation Pillar of Cloud months ago. All major military campaigns require detailed planning. Multiple provocations initiated conflict.

Israel deplores peace and stability. It lives by the sword. It's a modern-day Sparta. It threatens the region and humanity. It's leaders are war criminals.

They bear full responsibility for ongoing violence. All Gazans are victims. They're not terrorists. Don't expect Times editors to explain.

Zionist ideology is root cause for decades of conflict and violence. Palestine's Nakba never ended. State terror is official Israeli policy.

Daily Palestinian life includes persecution, home demolitions, dispossessions, land theft, targeted assassinations, mass arrests, incarceration, torture, denial of virtually all rights, living in fear for what's next, and suffering more when Israel wages war.

The Israeli/Palestinian conflict is the longest unresolved one of our time. Nothing approaches it. It festers because of US/EU complicity. Western nations support Israel's worst crimes. Palestinians struggle to survive against long odds.

Zionist ideology bears full responsibility. It's corrosive, destructive, racist, extremist, undemocratic and hateful.

It claims Jewish supremacy, specialness and uniqueness as God's "chosen people."

It espouses violence. It deplores peaceful coexistence. It chooses confrontation over diplomacy. It believes in strength through militarism, intimidation, and naked aggression.

It's repugnant, indefensible, destructive and malignant. It harms Jews and non-Jews alike. It's the root cause of anti-Semitism. It's a monster. It's consuming its host and humanity.

Besieged Gazans are suffocated and murdered. Historian Ilan Pappe accused Israel of slow-motion genocide. So did Law Professor Francis Boyle, saying:

"What we're seeing in Gaza now, is pretty much slow-motion genocide against the (1.7) million Palestinians who live in Gaza."

"If you read the 1948 Genocide Convention, it clearly says that one instance of genocide is the deliberate infliction of conditions of life calculated to bring about the physical destruction of a people in whole or in part."

"And that's exactly what has been done to Gaza, since the imposition of the blockade by Israel; then the massacre of 1,400 Palestinians, two-thirds of whom were civilians, in Operation Cast Lead."

"And that also raises the element in the Genocide Convention."

In 1923, revisionist Zionist leader Ze've Jabotinsky said Jews had no choice. Arabs must make way for them. Tolerating and/or partnering with them is out of the question.

Eretz Israel belongs solely to Jews. Dispossess and disperse Palestinians. Remove them entirely. Reinvent them as nomadic savages.

Erect "an iron wall of (superior) Jewish military force." Use it to dictate future events. Discourage Arab hope of prevailing.

Other likeminded Zionists advocated ethnic cleansing or extermination. Not one Arab village should remain. Remove their people by terror, assassination, intimidation, land confiscation, dispossession, and mass murder.

Former IDF Chief of Staff Raphael Eitan (1978 - 1983) said:

"We declare openly that the Arabs have no right to settle on even one centimeter of Eretz Israel."

"Force is all they do or ever will understand. We shall use the ultimate force until the Palestinians come crawling to us on all fours."

In 1937, future Israeli prime minister David Ben-Gurion said:

"We must expel the Arabs and take their place and if we have to use force, to guarantee our own right to settle in those places - then we have force at our disposal."

Zionist founder Theodore Herzl said Palestine is "our unforgettable historic homeland." He called for establishing it by dispossessing indigenous Palestinians and replacing them with Jews.

In his book "Overcoming Zionism," Joel Kovel wrote:

Zionism seeks "the restoration of tribalism in the guise of a modern, highly militarized and aggressive state."

"(It) cut Jews off from (their) history and led to a fateful identity of interests with antisemitism (becoming) the only thing that united them."

"(It) fell into the ways of imperialist expansion and militarism, and showed signs of the fascist malignancy."

If you accept "the idea of a Jewish state," you mix its twin notions of "particularism (and) exceptionalism."

They're "the actual bane of Judaism." They give "racism an objective, enduring, institutionalized and obdurate character."

Zionism turned Israel "into a machine for the manufacture of human rights abuses."

Israel was born in blood. Mass extermination and ethnic cleansing established the Jewish state. At issue always was replacing Palestinians with Jews.

Hard-line militancy used violence to displace Arabs, gain power, keep it, and rule by strength, confrontation, intimidation, and violence.

Longstanding policies continue. State terror, naked aggression, and institutionalized violence are called self-defense. Civilians are legitimate targets. Freedom fighters are called terrorists. Rule of law principles don't apply. Democratic values are mocked.

Israel claims the right to reign terror with impunity. It gets away with murder because world leaders condone and support it. Weapons and other aid are provided. So is diplomatic cover.

Peace process hypocrisy was stillborn from inception. Judaization through land confiscation, displacement, and settlements reflect official policy.

Arabs must be displaced and forcibly driven from all parts of Judea and Sumaria Israel wants. Jerusalem is claimed as Israel's exclusive capital.

Palestinians are seen as existential threats. Israeli Arabs are called fifth-column ones. Conflict is a way of life. Institutionalized violence, racism, and repression define official policies.

Final solution plans call for dispossession and slow-motion genocide. Judaization and de-Arabization are policies. Moshe Dayan once said treat them like "dogs" so they'll leave.

Ben-Gurion favored "terror, assassination, intimidation, land confiscation," and violence. Netanyahu prefers all that and more. A previous article called him more mad dog than leader. His contempt for non-Jews might make some despots blush.

He bears full responsibility for daily slaughter in Gaza. It shows no signs of ending. How much death and destruction does he crave before calling off his dogs?

How much Palestinian suffering is enough? How many dead children and infants will satisfy him? When will he say enough's enough?

When will world leaders have backbone enough to confront him? When will Palestinian rights be recognized? When will treating them like human beings become policy? Maybe next time. Not now.

Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago and can be reached at

His new book is titled "How Wall Street Fleeces America: Privatized Banking, Government Collusion and Class War"

Visit his blog site at and listen to cutting-edge discussions with distinguished guests on the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network Thursdays at 10AM US Central time and Saturdays and Sundays at noon. All programs are archived for easy listening.

Protest at Fort Meade, recruiting centers, and U.S. embassies to demand fair treatment for Bradley!

Rally and protest November 27 at Fort Meade!
November 27-December 2 Bradley Manning’s defense will be facing off with the military prosecution in Ft. Meade to argue that all charges be dismissed because of “unlawful pretrial punishment”.
This is one of the defense’s final chances to reduce possible sentencing, second in importance only to the court martial which begins next February 4th. It’s a crucial chance for the public to show the military and the media that they still support Bradley, by coming out to Fort Meade on November 27 to protest injustice in the military court!
Come rally with us outside the main gate of Fort Meade at 10am and demand that Bradley’s mistreatment be accounted for! Speakers will include leading members of the Bradley Manning Support Network and partner organizations.
At this extremely important hearing, Bradley’s lawyer David Coombs will focus on the abuse Bradley endured in Quantico, VA. It is now well-known that Bradley was held for nine months in solitary confinement, in conditions that were declared by UN Chief Rapporteur on Torture Juan Mendez to be “cruel, inhuman and degrading.” David Coombs will present evidence that brig psychiatrists opposed the decision to hold Bradley in solitary, and that brig commanders misled the public when they said that Bradley’s treatment was for “Prevention of Injury”. Following the protest, we encourage people to stay for some or all of the hearing, to help boost Bradley’s spirits with your presence in the courtroom.
Get directions to Fort Meade. Please contact for information about carpooling or offering rides. RSVP on facebook.
This event has been endorsed by the following organizations: Courage to Resist, Codepink, Veterans for Peace -DC Chapter, Positive Force, Washington Peace Center, Hiroshima Nagasaki Peace Committee, DC Metro Science for the People

Solidarity actions encouraged!
For those unable to attend the events at Ft. Meade, we are calling for solidarity actions at military recruiting office nationwide, and U.S. embassies internationally. We ask that you take photos of your group holding “We are Bradley Manning” signs, or a similarly supportive message, at the relevant location, and then mail that to the following officials:
Army Chief of Staff
General Raymond Odierno

Chief of Staff of the US Army
101 Army Pentagon, Rm. 3E672
Washington DC 20310-0200
President Barack Obama
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20500
Use our new event tool to register your action on our website. After the event, when mailing your photo to the above officials, please include a brief letter of explanation. For example,
“We gathered on November 27, 2012 in front of the recruiting center in (city, state) to protest the mistreatment of military whistle-blower PFC Bradley Manning. Whistle-blowers play an important role in a democracy, and by revealing evidence of unpunished war crimes, as well as secret corporate influence on U.S. foreign policy,Bradley Manning acted in the interest of American citizens. We are appalled by the nine months Bradley was forced to spend in solitary confinement at Quantico, VA in addition to the fact he will have spent over 900 days in prison before receiving a trial. Please free Bradley Manning.”
Please also submit photos of your action to